Alex Bell Prepares for World Premiere

Books make no money, not unless you are Jordan or Jeremy Clarkson. My book mentions Jordan, but the river. So I have to do something more than just, you know, write it. I have to sell it.

So, today is the world premiere of Water Wars, a free lunch time show during which I entertain thousands with my theory about water and civilisation. Hang on, that doesn’t even work for me, and it’s my book. No, the show will be a fun journey through how humans have learnt to waste water. Does that sound better?

This is the crisis of the fringe programme blurb. A few words to describe a show in a way that you would want to go and see. My description features some waffle and has the kind of perky tone I’d hate. It would have helped had I known what was in the performance before I sent in the application to the Fringe. At the time I didn’t even know the name of the book.

After much discussion on the book title (“You can’t use the word civilisation – people don’t understand it – can we mention Katie Price in the subtitle?”) we settled on Peak Water. That is, you’ll have spotted, different to the title of the show. Fortunately, lots of people care about water wars and I now know an astonishing amount about such things. I have even invested in a water pistol. I may start my own.

I have only one guiding principle, that people reading books or giving lectures is limb-bendingly dull, so I have devised an animated promenade performance that attempts to describe how mankind has built the civilization on the ditch and the pipe. Come along, as, as you’ll have
probably deduced by now, it can only be the most glorious car crash. It will therefore prove that other great dictum: you never make money from a Fringe show.

Those of you concerned at my addiction to non-commercial activities are welcome to make a donation to Luath publishers on the promise you’ll get a great book in about a month, or you can turn up at Schop on St Mary’s Street in Edinburgh at lunchtime. Otherwise, I’ll tell you the awful
details tomorrow.

Alex Bell is a co-founder of allmediascotland.com. His book, Peak Water, is out this September. His Edinburgh Fringe show, Water Wars, is free at 1300 at The Schop, St Mary’s Street, Edinburgh from August 10-14 and 17-21.

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